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NJ Watchung Lake - Fishing

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Lat: 40.635513
Lng: -74.455399

Marker owner: dnorris

Average user rating for this marker: 2.75

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(4 ratings)

NJ Watchung Lake
Marker Description: Watchung Lake is a fairly decent manmade bass lake. The lake is "Catch and Release Only" so fish are able to grow quite large.

Watchung Lake contains largemouth bass that are roughly 20" and, most likely, larger. Catfish have been caught that were two feet in length. It is known the fish are there, but days at the lake can be "on or off". Depending on the conditions, you could catch a dozen fish or get not even one single strike. It seems after days of "being skunked", you catch that 3 or 4 pound bass and all is forgotten - That's the whole reason I fish this lake.

Dusk seems to be the most productive time for Watchung Lake. Bigger bass tend to roam around more freely once the sun beings to set. Top water lures or rubber worms along the bottom can produce nice bass practically anywhere in the lake.

Things to Know

No boats. Watchung Lake IS patrolled by a park ranger, so wear your fishing license. Do not walk on the Damn/Spillway for very long. A policemen who notices will tell you to "walk off the damn to safety" through a megaphone in front of everyone in the park. It can be a bit embarrassing.

Heavy rain storms can effect the lake very badly; It causes severe flooding which produces massive amounts of debris. After an extremely heavy rainfall or many days of rain, it is usually best to give the lake a day or two to settle.

Visitor Comments

Re: NJ Watchung Lake Posted by kennypowers Tue. October 22, 2013 01:25 am
That was cool that you caught a trout, I didn't know it was a stocked Lake.

Re: NJ Watchung Lake Posted by audisnapr Mon. October 21, 2013 06:55 pm
We live close by so I took the wife and 4 y/o daughter fishing for the first time. It was clear, breezy and in the low 60's. We arrived around 12:30pm, parked in the main lot over by the damn and walked in a bit - set up camp on the grassy area in front of the Water & Wine Ristorante off of Stirling Rd. We came prepared with a bait rod and spinner rod. I used live worms, homegrown in the back yard, with a bobber to set the bait about 2ft below the surface. I used a yellow roostertail on the spinner setup. Within the first few casts over the lillies I landed an 8-9" trout. From that point on, we chased the dream for another 4 hours or so only coming up with little 4" bluegill or sunfish on the live worms and maybe one small bluegill on the various spinners we tried throughout our time there.

Access is quite easy and although you aren't really "in nature" we weren't really bothered by the passer byer's in the park. The water was quite murky and the geese poop is a turn off, but we'll probably go back since it's close and there's a promise of big fish to be had.

Re: Watchung Lake Posted by Lardalmighty Mon. November 22, 2010 03:01 am
I fished this lake a few years ago in the summer. I fished along Mountain Blvd where you're not technically supposed to. I caught six bass up to about 16" by flipping a tandem spinnerbait into holes in the lily pads. I tried more traditional flipping lures (jigs, tubes, worms), but they wanted the spinnerbait. Kind of bizarre. The lake looks like it could hold decent fish, but it's not that impressive. I wouldn't go out of my way to fish it again.

Re: Watchung Lake Posted by dnorris Sun. November 21, 2010 05:19 pm
I fished yesterday and it was cold and windy, not the best time for bass fishing. I had no luck. The lake was not as clear as I would have hoped with very little rain lately.

Not the best time to rate how good the Lake is for bass. I have heard many good reports and seen quite a few positive reviews on the internet. I had also hoped that the lake was a little more secluded from roads and whatnot. Not really the wild or even the idea of wild in this park setting. Not a place I would go back.
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